Nation’s biggest used car dealer expanding here

LYNNWOOD — CarMax, the nation’s largest used auto dealership, is planning to expand into Snohomish County.

The publicly traded company purchased the former Detroit Autoworks property along Highway 99 last year.

The sale included about 8 acres and cost $10 million, according to records filed with Snohomish County.

“We have purchased property in Lynnwood and have identified it as an area that fits into our current growth plan,” said CarMax spokesman Casey Werderman in an email.

An opening date has not been announced, but a building on the property was demolished earlier this spring.

Werdeman said in the email that the company will open its 135th location in Spokane later this month, its first in Washington state. The closest dealerships for CarMax are now in California and Nevada.

CarMax expects to add 10 to 15 stores in each of the next three fiscal years, Werdeman added.

CarMax was started in the early 1990s by Circuit City executives who were looking to create a national retail chain without a national competitor, according to the CarMax website.

Circuit City, which went out of business in 2009, invested $50 million into the CarMax concept. The company sold its first car, a 1993 Jeep Grand Cherokee in 1993.

CarMax became its own company in 1997 and is traded under the ticker symbol KMX.

The company reported nearly $11 billion in total sales for fiscal year 2013.

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